Tuesday, June 7, 2016

TCHC urged to provide security in wake of boy's shooting in Toronto

TORONTO - Residents of an east-end social housing complex are certain outsiders came into their community and shot a 10-year-old boy as he slept inside his family’s townhouse.

Toronto Councillor Paula Fletcher relayed that message, following a community-only meeting Tuesday night at the Eastview Neighbourhood Community Centre, just steps away from 70 Blake St. — in the Danforth-Pape Aves. area — where shots were fired at one of the complex’s units Friday night.

TCHC tenants and other members of the immediate community voted to bar the media from the meeting.

“They don’t believe this was the responsibility of anyone in this community, they believe somebody came from another area (into) this community,” said Fletcher, adding that residents called for improved lighting, better fencing and more community meetings.

But Fletcher also said residents are calling for the TCHC to put back in place its own permanent, on-site security.

“I’m not sure we’ll get that. I am going to bring their concerns back to the city, back to the mayor, back to the TCHC,” Fletcher said.

Resident Susan Godin insisted if the TCHC reinstated its own security personnel, there wouldn’t be so many problems at the site.

“We used to have on-site security and they used to patrol the complex,” she added. “Well, now we don’t have on-site security ... It is on-call. By the time you phone them and they come, everything is over and done with.”

The wounded boy is expected to fully recover. He was rushed to hospital after a bullet hit his shoulder.

TCHC spokesman Lisa Murray said Tuesday the shooting prompted the social housing landlord to call a community meeting — a routine move following an incident such as Friday’s shooting.

Murray said security cameras at the complex were recently upgraded and that they’ll play a role in the police investigation.

“We have dozens of cameras in this community,” said Murray. “You can’t get in or out of this community without (being caught on camera).”
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